Anyone who decides to bring a cat or kitten home needs to decide which cat food is best. Most people don’t realize that cats have to meet specific needs just like humans. Let’s look at what your cat needs to be healthy.
What Cats Need To Eat?
Cats are naturally carnivores. This means that they tend to consume the most protein in their diet. When a cat hunts, it will get protein from the muscle meat of edible animals. This meat also gives them taurine, an important nutrient needed to maintain good health.
A cat also needs to be well hydrated, just like us. They don’t drink a lot of water naturally. Outdoor cats usually get the most moisture they need from the prey they consume.
The cats inside need our help to make sure they get all the fluids they need. Always leave a fresh bowl of water to drink, but keep in mind that this can lead to insufficient fluid during the day. Good cat food will help.
A good combination of wet and dry food is best. The moisture content of canned cat food is usually high, ranging from 75% to 78%. This is a great way for them to get the moisture they need to keep them well hydrated.
Serving about 3/4 of the diet in canned foods will help maintain their good health. If you give an extra 1/4 of the food as dry food, it will help keep your teeth clean and in good shape.
Choose the Right Cat Food
Choosing the right cat food is very important. Not all canned foods contain the nutrients needed to keep your kitten healthy. Check the label on the main ingredients. Check that the product contains a good concentration of food. Many manufacturers use smaller amounts, so read the label well and make sure the protein is the main ingredient.
If the label states “formula” or “dinner”, the concentration of the main ingredient will usually be lower. It is equally important to read the label on dry food. Many dry foods are high in protein from plant sources.
The cat’s digestive system is not designed to digest the cellulose in plants. Look for the same basic ingredients as canned food for high quality dry foods.
Protein should make up about 40% of a cat’s diet. The fat should be about 1/3 of it. That’s why it’s so important to choose foods that are high in protein and have the right amount of fat. It is also important to check the amount and source of carbohydrates.
Note that the carbohydrate content is less than 50%. The main source of carbohydrates should be vegetables and rice, not cornmeal. You also want your diet to be high in vitamins and minerals such as omega-3, taurine and fiber.
Look for foods that use natural rather than artificial preservatives. Vitamin C and Vitamin E are good preservatives and good for your cat’s health.
If your cat is now accustomed to eating dry food, introducing wet food can be a challenge. Never make drastic changes to your pet’s diet. Introduce new foods gradually. There are several types of wet foods such as pate, flakes and chunks.
Texture is important for cats, so finding one they like is tricky. Experiment with different varieties to find the variety you like best. When adapting to wet food, try adding a small amount of water to the dry food to increase the moisture intake and reduce the crunchiness.
Just remember that your cat’s health depends on their diet. By providing a good combination of dry and wet food, your cat will be in good health. It will give you many happy healthy years with your beloved fluffy friend.